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Psychopaths don’t just hurt those around them. They build them up first, so that the fall will be more painful and, preferably, shatter them. The higher a psychopath takes you during the idealization phase of the relationship (when he showers you with flattery, gifts and declarations of eternal love), the lower you can expect to fall in his eyes during the devaluation phase, when he isolates you from loved ones, undermines your confidence and criticizes you both to your face and to others.My psychopath would never directly try to isolate me from my loved ones. He is much too good to be that obvious. He'd talk about how much he liked my mom, and other members of my family. Although he always managed to monopolize my time and keep me away from friends and family as much as possible. His would exhibit more of an expression of neediness so I'd feel like he was just lost without me which made me want to spend all my time with him instead with others.
He is also the kind of psychopath whose life is parasitic. He loves to have other people take care of his needs. If a family member wanted to cook us dinner for example. He'd be all over that for two reason. First it was free meal. He didn't need to spend any money on food. Plus, someone else would be doing the preparing, cooking, cleaning and all he was expected to do was show up. He loved that. His grandmother purchased his home, his father purchased his car, he managed to get me to supply dinner for he and his children for a good part of the 1st year we were together until I finally refused to do it any longer and required him to supply his family meals. He of course tried making me feel that I was being unreasonable for this.
He also continued to simultaneously build me up, still nearly 8 years later while at the same time tearing me down. But again never directly. He would never come straight and out and call me names or tell me I was stupid. Again, he is much too good for that. He would however tell me how smart I was about everything but this one thing..and then continue to tear my thoughts down about a particular issue. It turns out soon every thought or idea I expressed I would get the same reaction from him. "You're really smart Lisa, but on this one thing......" Very smart of him. I can't accuse him of calling me stupid when he starts off by telling me how smart I am. Just before tearing every thought I have to shreds.
All psychopaths behave this way towards their partners, at the very least on an emotional level. They gain your love and trust only to take sadistic pleasure in harming you. Each time you forgive their behavior and take them back, they enjoy the thrill of having regained your confidence so that they can hurt you again. Psychopaths engage in psychological torture for the same reason that totalitarian regimes do: to crush you body and spirit; to have you entirely at their mercy and under their control.
I don't know which hurts more physical or physcological. When it's physical abuse it seems like more people understand your dilemma and why you feel trapped. But, the psychological abuse people can't figure out why you stay for all that mistreatment. They wonder why you can't see what a total jerk you have. Well, the trouble is you can see that side.But, they keep you so off balance with just enough charm to keep your hope alive that tomorrow they'll be completely different. They also have you at some level convinced you are to blame for all the abuse.